Lop Ear Gene Inheritance?

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kukupecpec

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I have been trying to find some information about how lop eared-ness is inherited but am having some trouble finding out with just an internet search. I was hoping the knowledgeable people at RO could tell me!
If only one parent rabbit has lop ears, will all the kits have lop ears? Or will it be a 50/50 chance? Or is this what can cause one ear to lop and one ear to stand up?
I have a doe who is not only a sweet and affectionate pet, but a GREAT mother - she had a handful of litters before she came to me. She was rescued from a bobcat as a kit and was the only survivor. I also have an adorable super friendly medium size lop mutt buck. I breed serama chickens (cute little mini chickens, smallest breed in the world) and have had a number of customers ask me if I ever sell pet rabbits because my two are so super friendly, so got to thinking about maybe having a litter. I know a lot of people find the lop eared trait desirable in a pet so wondered what my chances of lop eared babies are.

(I bred meat rabbits growing up so this wouldn't be my first time breeding, but it would be my first with pet intentions)
 

Korr_and_Sophie

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Lop ears are not caused by a gene the way BEW are. Lop ears are due to the shape of the crown (top of the head). Lop rabbits all tend to have the same crown shape which allows the ears to lop. Up eared rabbits have a crown that supports upright ears. When the 2 are mixed, you can get a crown that supports up ears, lopped ears or inbetween. It really comes down to each individual rabbit, but the genes of the parents do play a role. There can be rabbits with one fully lopped ear and one that is fully upright.
Chance are, with a lop crossed to an up eared rabbit, the offpsing will have some lopping but usually not all the way.
 

kukupecpec

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Lop ears are not caused by a gene the way BEW are. Lop ears are due to the shape of the crown (top of the head). Lop rabbits all tend to have the same crown shape which allows the ears to lop. Up eared rabbits have a crown that supports upright ears. When the 2 are mixed, you can get a crown that supports up ears, lopped ears or inbetween. It really comes down to each individual rabbit, but the genes of the parents do play a role. There can be rabbits with one fully lopped ear and one that is fully upright.
Chance are, with a lop crossed to an up eared rabbit, the offpsing will have some lopping but usually not all the way.
Ah ok! That makes a lot of sense. Thank you so much for that explanation! That was exactly what I was looking for!
So the offspring might have something like the helicopter ears? Those always crack me up! I wonder what caused that!
 

WillowRabbitry

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Not trying to be rude, but there are enough pet rabbits in the world. The reason we breeders breed our rabbits is to improve them. We breed for a reason. If you still want to breed rabbits, please buy two of the same type of rabbits from a well known breeder. If you want more information, just message me and I can give you more information on breeding rabbits :)
 

OakRidgeRabbits

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As Korr_and_Sophie explained, ear carriage is determined by the crown, which is an area of cartilage on the top of the head. Rabbits with fully lopped ears have wide, deep crowns that encourage loss of ear control. If the crown is not properly structured, the rabbit may have nearly vertical ear carriage.

I would encourage you to reconsider breeding your rabbits. Not because of "overpopulation" - that is an entirely different, complicated topic. However, it would be in the best interest of your rabbits themselves to have them spayed/neutered and remain as pets. Rabbits must be bred for the first time early in their life (does by 5-6 months old) to better ensure a smooth delivery. The older the doe is for her first litter, the more complications you can encounter. You risk losing the doe if she is bred for the first time later in life.

Also, as WillowRabbitry said, improvement of the breed is important. While temperament is one consideration, physical characteristics are arguably more important. Domestic rabbits can live 7-10 or more years with good care, but they're not inherently equipped to thrive for so many years. Structural faults like pinched hindquarters or long shoulders can cause uneven weight distribution and can put rabbits at more risk for injury. Rabbits should be selected for physical traits that will benefit a long life. Without that guarantee, you're (unintentionally) doing the future babies a disservice.

If you're interested in raising rabbits, I absolutely encourage learning more about how you can influence the future of the domestic rabbit. It's important to be mindful of both temperament and physical characteristics, whether you're raising rabbits for show, breeding, pets, or other purposes. But I probably wouldn't recommend breeding your pets.
 

lovelops

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I have been trying to find some information about how lop eared-ness is inherited but am having some trouble finding out with just an internet search. I was hoping the knowledgeable people at RO could tell me!
If only one parent rabbit has lop ears, will all the kits have lop ears? Or will it be a 50/50 chance? Or is this what can cause one ear to lop and one ear to stand up?
I have a doe who is not only a sweet and affectionate pet, but a GREAT mother - she had a handful of litters before she came to me. She was rescued from a bobcat as a kit and was the only survivor. I also have an adorable super friendly medium size lop mutt buck. I breed serama chickens (cute little mini chickens, smallest breed in the world) and have had a number of customers ask me if I ever sell pet rabbits because my two are so super friendly, so got to thinking about maybe having a litter. I know a lot of people find the lop eared trait desirable in a pet so wondered what my chances of lop eared babies are.

(I bred meat rabbits growing up so this wouldn't be my first time breeding, but it would be my first with pet intentions)
I wish you the best of luck and whether or not you have kits to improve the breed or because you enjoy it, I hope it goes well and you have luck with your bunnies. The chickens sound really cute!!

When I lived in California outside LA we had to watch out for our pets at night due to Bobcats and mountain lions being in the area I was living in, Topanga Canyon and I had some friends lose some pets that way.

All in all good luck with your animals and the chickens sound adorable.

Vanessa
 

kukupecpec

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Thank you so much for all the thoughtful replies. It's really nice to have a place people give you honest answers without being mean. I've directed lots of friends here because of the friendly nature!

I know there is a lot that goes into deciding to breed, I promise it's not willy nilly. The doe I have is a seasoned momma, she was bred for the first time at 5 months, and has had a handful of litters since. We plan to have her spayed once we aren't breeding her, and my non-breeding rabbits in the past have been spayed/neutered. This is just a new venture for us. We haven't made a decision either way yet, but thank you all for your information!
 

lovelops

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Thank you so much for all the thoughtful replies. It's really nice to have a place people give you honest answers without being mean. I've directed lots of friends here because of the friendly nature!

I know there is a lot that goes into deciding to breed, I promise it's not willy nilly. The doe I have is a seasoned momma, she was bred for the first time at 5 months, and has had a handful of litters since. We plan to have her spayed once we aren't breeding her, and my non-breeding rabbits in the past have been spayed/neutered. This is just a new venture for us. We haven't made a decision either way yet, but thank you all for your information!
I don't know if I quite agree with you about honest answers without being mean, but.. I think you will find a lot of people here who feel very strongly about their bunnies and when one feels strongly that causes emotions or like my mom used to say, it'd get her Irish up! :nosir:

Anyway I love the pic you have of your avatar if that is your baby and I for one don't think anyone doubts your ability to properly take care of , fix, etc your rabbits..

I would love to see more pics!

All the best
Vanessa
 
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Back to the ear question. Stewart was from an accidental breeding of a Netherland and Lop--all 4 had longer strait up ears and looked like a big Nethie. Nikki is small-our avatar- and looks like a Nethie and her mother was a mini. Bun_bun had shorter ears but did not look like a Netherland at all. We also have Lilli and she's the longest rabbit I've ever seen and has the Lop look but her ears stick strait out like wings. You can predict some of the characteristics but the end product may still have variations--like two brunettes having all blond children.
 

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